Even though it’s an archaic technology, pagers are still an incredibly common technology in healthcare, with nearly 80% of hospitals still using them. Healthcare organizations cite security reasons – pagers are less hackable than smart phones – and cost efficiency as reasons they still use this technology that’s pretty much seen nowhere else. That all makes sense, but here’s the rub: pagers convolute communications between healthcare teams, leading to lower patient outcomes. Let’s take a deep dive and talk about how this problem can be addressed.
Pagers Slow Information Flow…
Pagers limit the amount of information that can be shared – and contacting the right team member to get more information takes time and leaves care team members in the dark. Think about a doctor who gets a page from nurse that patient results are ready – the doctor then calls the nurse to get more information but the nurse doesn’t answer. The doctor ends up having to play phone tag and it takes several hours until he finally gets the information needed to provide quality.
… Which Lowers Quality of Care
Not being able to share contextual information doesn’t just slow down care and frustrate team members, it also results in lower quality care. If care team providers can’t easily share ppatient information, patient safety gets compromised, which can mean increased costs for a healthcare organization. On the other side, effective communication leads to positive patient outcomes, improved information flow, increased patient satisfaction and decreased lengths of stay – all leading to a better ROI for healthcare organizations.
But There’s Another Way
Healthcare organizations typically rely on pagers because of their security and cost-effectiveness. But what if you could get the same security and cost from a mobile messaging solution?
Let’s reimagine the scenario where the doctor tried to chase the nurse down for patient results. This time, both are able to use their phone or tablet to communicate. The nurse sends the doctor a message letting the doctor know that patient’s test results are in and she has the following concerns. She also attaches the results to the message. The doctor sends her a message letting her know he received the information and doesn’t have any follow-up questions. He feels confident that he has the information needed to treat the patient. The patient is discharged a few hours later.
Vaporstream emphasizes security and cost-effectiveness – the two things that make pagers so popular – but we are also committed to making sure healthcare teams can effectively communicate and produce better patient outcomes. Through our platform, team members can send detailed messages, share reports and images and even process billing documents. Here’s more on how we can support your healthcare team: